Tuesday, January 19, 2010


Friends and Family,

I’M STAYEN IN AGNES!!! But I lost another great companion! He is now the Zone Leader for the zone next door!! We can meet at the boundary line and wave at each other, haha! But I have a new companion that I have heard great things about! Transfers will be Thursday!! It’s hard to loose another companion, but change is always exciting!! This week has been great!! First off, thank you to Heather, Chelsea, Uncle Kellen and family, and Grandpa. Grandpa, I love your letters!! And as for the country here, it is soooo flat!! I need mountains!! I really haven’t seen much of it because I’ve been in the city surrounded by buildings. And the cold hasn’t been bad at all. They say that this has been the warmest winter in years, but people keep saying that February and March will make up for the warm January! I’m looking forward to it!! It’s funny because it was just at 0 c (32 F) and it felt amazing. People are out with no coats, soaking up the sun!

Mom, I have some requests for you and Payt. Can you get me a ton of EFY music and some good MoTab. My comp this transfer had it and it was great for the 20 min ride to church.

As for Akon’s family, their Dad in Texas agreed to have missionaries over, so we are hoping and praying that it works out! Thank you so much for all of the prayers! They are so amazing! Like I can’t even tell you, they are the best!!

We found another family from Africa and they are great! They made it to church this week, so we have a ton of families and if they all make it next week, I don’t know what will happen. The Primary teachers are gonna stop coming to church! Just kidding. But it is sooo great!! The new family speaks Arabic and some other African language! We found a translator in the ward named Benedict, and that went great!!

Thank you so much for the great emails from the cabin and the great email from the (Doug & Jenn) Clarks!! You are all the best!! Payt, live it up skiing, but you better pick up boarding!! And be careful, football season is coming soon!!

Hey, so this week was great! It’s funny because I so badly wanted to learn a new language, but on my mission I really have!! It’s called Broken English, and I already can pick up on about 20 dialects! haha There is a quote in Preach My Gospel that I have learned to love!! It says, "It is true intelligence to take a subject that is mysterious and great in itself and to unfold and simplify it so that a child can understand it!"(John Taylor) I love this quote, because I have learned to use words to teach the Plan of Salvation so that a four year old kid can understand it and teach it back to his parents in another language. We have gotten it down so that even without a translator we can teach!! All these people have Bibles in their language and we just teach out of that, and some of the languages have Book of Mormons that we were able to order and teach out of! It is so fun! All Sunday while we are juggling kids, we also find scriptures to go along with whatever the speaker or teacher is talking about! It is so great when you know scriptures to share but so hard and humbling when you know there’s a perfect scripture, but you don’t know where it is! I love the scriptures though, because they teach soooo much better then I do! It is so fun to teach these families because they are so patient with us and so humble! They feel the Spirit and they know that this is what they should do!! They sit at church for 3 hours when they don’t what’s going on. But they know it’s what they should do, so they show up!! They are amazing!! It also is so fun to teach people that speak English! haha Because we have learned to teach so simply, that we can answer a lot of questions before they even ask them! It’s definitely a big gear change though.

Akon’s family speaks great English and they are doing so good if their Dad would stop being an Agency Stealer!! But we have another appointment with them tonight at the Bishop’s house. After this week we will have taught them all the lessons and we will then be waiting on the dad! They are soo amazing!!

We have so many families right now that we are teaching! It’s crazy!! I feel bad for my companion because he is really sad that he has to leave! He has seen one baptism his whole mission and he is such a hard worker and this transfer was looking so good for next transfer!! Next transfer is going be so stressful, but hopefully everything falls into place!

I hate smoking and alcohol because it is a hold up for so many people! We tried to help Derek and Ivonne quit smoking (they’ve been to church like 4 times) and they said they can’t do it! It’s so hard because they know its all true, but they just aren’t willing to put forward the effort to change!! Derek said, “Maybe I’ll get baptized in ten years or so.” Ahhhhh!! It’s so hard!

Uncle Doug I loved your email and it is so true!! It’s so hard to know which people are ready, though! I wish everyone had a check mark or an X over their head. It’s so easy to get in houses and to get them to come to church, but it is so hard to get people to want to go to the effort to really change and be converted! They know it’s true!! They just don’t want to got to the effort! It’s ridiculous!! But there are some amazing people right now and hopefully they will make the effort!

Thanks for all that all of you do! Be safe! Love you all a ton!

Love, Elder Smith